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Reflecting on BP's 'Beyond Petroleum' shift, new study puts climate change responsibility on energy companies

In May 1997, Lord John Browne, BP PLC's chief executive at the time, delivered a stem-winding speech to about 100 people at Stanford University to "discuss in a calm and rational way a subject which raises great emotion." That subject was climate change -- a matter weighed down by "a lot of noise in the data" but, ultimately, one of scientific consensus, BP's top man said. The speech signaled a new era for the energy giant. Yet, according to the authors of a new essay examining who is responsible for the warming planet, the world's biggest energy companies have essentially done nothing since then to address their contribution to climate change.

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